Another Ganesh Chaturti has passed us by. I remember the time when the hailed remover of obstacles would be welcomed into the house amidst much fanfare! While the rituals have not stuck, the feelings have.
Bringing Ganpati home, the 'mandap' with banana leaves and flowers. The deep red kumkum and bright yellow of turmeric, air thick with the scent of camphor, agarbatti and amvade, tinkling of gejje and akshate, cotton of the deepas and the gejje vastra, burning ghee, baale yele, kadubu, don't look at the moon.
It has not been the same since we left Bangalore, it will never be the same but I am richer for having been there and for the memories. Blessed for being able to transport my thoughts back to those of the excited child that could think of nothing better than a morning of pooje and an afternoon lunch on a banana leaf.
This year we celebrated. A makeshift diya, fruits for the naivedya, aarti and lunch. A new city, a new house, a new person on board - but the unchanging sanctity of the occasion and the unchanging God.